Ontario, Lost 200 lb. with TOPS
"I have a completely different mindset, and I am mentally ready for anything that life throws at me!”
Until around the age of 35 years old, my life revolved around sports, drinking and working. I ran my own DJ business, which included DJing at one of the most popular bars in town. Bar food and fast food were staples in my diet, chased down with plenty of beer. Just before my 35th birthday, I became very ill and was diagnosed with collagenous colitis. It forced me into couch potato status, and my weight skyrocketed to nearly 500 pounds.
During this time, I met and married the love of my life, Colleen. She, her mom and a couple of close friends were concerned about my weight and mentioned TOPS to me. I kept resisting, but finally joined in 2009. For years, I would take the weight off, then stress eat and put it back on again. During this time, I was revived on the surgical table after a heart event, both my parents passed away, and I lost part of a lung during surgery for lung cancer. In November 2018, my doctor let me know I was on the road to being prediabetic, and he said very clearly, “I don't want to talk to you about this again.” I was 420 pounds that day and have lost 200 pounds since.
The most important thing I did was identify my triggers/stressors for my weight gains. I dealt with stress for the first part of my life by drinking and when that was no longer an option, by eating. I asked my doctor to refer me to a therapist to help me figure out techniques for dealing with stress. She has been incredible in helping me deal with the last year with COVID-19. I was able to keep my eye on my journey. At the start of 2020, I was struggling to walk 3,000 steps a day. Now, I am averaging over 22,000 steps a day. Thank you to my wife, Colleen, TOPS chapter, Judy Bell, Daryl Maybanks, my therapist, doctor and walking partners.
You only get out of TOPS what you put into it. We can't guarantee weight loss just by attending meetings, but we can offer support through each stage of your weight-loss journey. Your results may vary.